Afrikaner Calvinism

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Afrikaner Calvinism is, according to theory, a unique cultural development that combined the Calvinist religion with the political aspirations of the white Afrikaans speaking people of South Africa.

From 1652 to 1835, settlers primarily from the Netherlands, and migrant and refugee Calvinist Protestants from Germany, France, Scotland, and elsewhere in Europe, combined in South Africa to form a distinct people[1], called the Afrikaners. A significant number of the French progenitors of the Afrikaner people were Huguenots, who first began to arrive between 1687 and 1691 in flight from the persecution that lasted for one hundred years after the Edict of Nantes was revoked.[2] Between the end of the 18th century and the end of the 20th century, these people increasingly considered themselves Afrikaner (originally meaning simply "African") rather than European. They spoke their own, indigenous language, called Afrikaans, and were bound together by a form of Calvinist religion. The Afrikaners negotiated a home-rule arrangement in the four British Colonies 10 years after the Anglo-Boer war and firmly established themselves as the ruling minority in South Africa until international pressure and increasing chaos within South Africa compelled them to dismantle their policies of exclusive control, called Apartheid.

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Settlement period

The Dutch settlement of the Cape of Good Hope was the first colonial success in South Africa. The key to this success was the establishment of strict rules of trade between the settlement and the native population. No trade or Christian missionary ventures among the Africans were permitted without the permission of the company administrator. Stealing or shooting cattle was especially forbidden as a cause of inevitable conflict with the natives. The early Europeans were appalled by the appearance and the customs of the Africans, and the completely false report that the natives were cannibals reinforced their motive to avoid unnecessary contact. The Cape was a walled garden, with Africa on the outside and Europe within. This strict order minimized conflicts with the Africans during the early settlement period.

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